SkepSun #162 (11_01_2015)

We start off with a Halloween-themed Freethought Radio this morning. Before hearing the song “Spooky Mormon Hell Dream” co-hosts Annie Laurie Gaylor and Dan Barker announce state/church victories, lawsuits and complaints across the country. Then, from the 38th annual FFRF convention we’ll hear Anita Weier’s speech  as she accepts the “Freethought Heroine” award and FFRF lead staff attorney Rebecca Markert recaps thousands of complaints and hundreds of victories by FFRF’s legal staff in 2015.

Well, anti-vaxxers are claiming that the new autistic muppet character on Sesame Street named Julia, created to foster understanding for children with this disability is part of a conspiracy between Big Pharma and Sesame Street to “normalize vaccine injuries” by portraying autism in a positive light.  We’ll see what Gordon Bonnet’s thinks about this.

What is a conspiracy theory and why are some people so prone to believe them?  A professor of Philosophy at Warwick College in the U.K. with the enviable name of Quassim Cassam investigates these fascinating questions in conversation with Nigel Warburton on the Philosophy Bites podcast.

Then Hemant Mehta of The Friendly Atheist interviews Sarah Morehead, President of the Reason Rally Coalition to get the inside scoop on the next Reason Rally to take place Thursday June 2nd through Sunday June 5th of next year. Morehead is also Executive Director of Recovering From Religion, the group that runs the Hotline Project and Secular Therapist Project. She was named American Atheists’ 2014 “Atheist of the Year.” They speak about what’s in store for the 2016 Reason Rally and how it’ll be different from the 2012 event as well as her work behind the scenes putting together something called “Apostacon.” You can see the Reason Rally launch video below.

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